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Difference Between Anesthesiologist and Nurse Anesthetist

Anesthesiologist vs Nurse Anesthetist
Doctors and nurses usually have distinct responsibilities. Doctors treat the patient by giving orders and directions. Nurses treat the patient by carrying out the orders of the doctors. Some difficult procedures should not be done by nurses because there will be a breach in responsibilities and tasks.

There is a major difference between anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists. To make things at ease, the former is a doctor who specializes in anesthesiology while the latter is a nurse who studied and trained for a few more years before becoming an anesthetist.

For a person to become anesthesiologists, he or she must study a four-year degree course followed by medical school for another four years. Then an exam for physician licensure would be taken. After successfully passing the exam, he or she would taker another four years of residency in which hands-on patient experience would be done to ensure quality patient intervention and care.

On the other side of nursing, for a nurse to become a nurse anesthetist, he or she completes a Bachelor’s degree. Then the individual must pass the nursing exam or NCLEX in the US. After passing the exam, a hospital experience is required for a minimum of one year. A Masters of Science in nursing must then be completed for an additional 2-3 years. The final step involves passing the exam for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist.

Nurse anesthetists and anesthesiologists don’t differ in function according to resources. They both assess the patient preoperatively before undergoing an operation. During the perioperative stage, either one of them monitors the vital signs of the patient including the respiratory rate, pulse rate, blood pressure, and pain sensation. Ultimately, during the post-operative stage, or after the operation, either can monitor the patient for post-operative complications which are very crucial after operations.

In terms of salary, they both differ, but still it’s high-paying. The doctor earns as much as 250,000 to 300,000 USD annually while the CRNA or Nurse Anesthetist earns 130,000 to 180,000 USD per annum.

Both careers are stressful. One must endure long hours of operation together with the surgeon. The life of the patient is always at stake so one must be able to think when there are complications. Still, it is a rewarding career in the end.

Anesthesiologists are doctors who studied medicine and took a residency. A nurse anesthetist finished nursing and received a Masters degree.
Anesthesiologists study longer for about 12 years while a CRNA studies for about 6-7 years in total.
Both do not differ in function and tasks.
Anesthesiologists earn more than CRNAs.

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